Bad News, Bacon Lovers: Pork Belly Prices Are Skyrocketing
They're up by 80 percent from just four years ago.
Bacon is a bewitching food. You could have just gorged on the most amazing meal of your life and can barely walk because you're so stuffed, and yet, if you get a whiff of this pork product, we promise you'll be salivating again in seconds. With powers so strong, it's no wonder Americans are obsessed with bacon; we consume about three pounds of it—per person—each year, with more than a whopping $4 billion-worth of bacon packages bought in 2015 alone. (And the industry is only growing.) But there is a dark side to that kind of high demand, and consumers will soon see it: the price of bacon has risen 80 percent this year over last. Plus, that high demand has producers scrambling to keep up, according to the Wall Street Journal.
However, we are "in a squeeze," as the newspaper calls it. With demand rising, some pig farmers are struggling to meet those quotas. There are some 71 million pigs (on farms) in the U.S. today. But despite that staggering number, bacon in commercial freezers is dipping to a low: stock was down to 31.6 million pounds of bacon in May, a 59 percent dip in our nationwide supply from just one year ago, the newspaper reports.
As a result, retailers and grocery stores are only buying what they need, and waiting to really fill shelves until prices (hopefully) fall as production (hopefully) increases.
Until then, may we suggest that—if you're going to pay such a pretty penny for your bacon addiction—you whip up something special with the now increasingly expensive meat? These recipes are will ensure your bacon budget is well spent.